Tuesday, September 15, 2015

How the Iran deal became the most strategic success of Obama’s presidency

By David Ignatius Opinion writer September 15 at 7:43 PM, WashPost

The political circus surrounding the Iran nuclear deal shouldn’t obscure the fact that President Obama won an enormous victory in negotiating the agreement and mustering the necessary congressional votes to sustain it. It’s the most determined, strategic success of his presidency.

Republican presidential candidates have denounced the deal as a sellout by a weak, feckless Obama. And polls make clear that the public is wary about a deal painted by critics as a bargain with the devil.

But Obama’s bet is endorsed by many leading strategists in the United States and abroad. Even in Israel, there’s grudging support from a growing share of the national-security establishment, who see the deal as preferable to any realistic alternative. The outliers are Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the U.S Republican leadership, who reject an agreement most nations endorse. The political reality is that Obama outfoxed them at nearly every turn.

A weak president Obama may be. But a paradox of his presidency is that he has been at his toughest in fighting for the Iran nuclear deal against Netanyahu, the leader of one of America’s closest allies. Netanyahu’s repeated attempts to scuttle the deal only seemed to make the president more determined.

(More here.)


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